WEB EXCLUSIVE: Faculty, once former students, share advice for EA Day

EA Day ties faculty, students, and alumni into a united community. We share a common goal: to beat Episcopal Academy in five games and win or—in this year’s case—keep the sweater that represents our rivalely. For faculty who once attended Haverford, this rivalry develops a distinctive significance and unique perspective. 

The Sweater’s home on Wilson Hall’s first floor – Pierce Laveran ’24

EA Day holds a special place in the heart of science teacher Mr. Christopher DiBello, who graduated in 2012.

“EA Day brings up a lot of memories,” he said. “When I was a freshman on the football team, we were playing EA [and] we hadn’t beaten them in a while. Then, one of the [Fifth Form] players intercepted the ball and returned it for a touchdown. The score was 6-0 and the score ended up holding the entire game.” 

Mr. DiBello, at the time, wasn’t sure of the game’s significance.

“I didn’t quite realize the importance of it—but after the game, once the whistle blew, I was actually run over by the crowd storming the field,”  Mr. DiBello said. “And that’s probably the moment: ‘I’m like wow, EA Day is pretty important around here.’ Through the years it was kind of like a rallying point and kind of like a big moment as we end the football season. A lot of times we were competing in the Inter Ac Championships and it was always a big time of year.” 

After becoming a teacher, Mr. Dibello’s perspective has changed.

“Solely from a teaching aspect, it is kind of a nuisance because the kids get so involved by it,” Mr. DiBello said. “But I think that’s kind of the beauty of it. We can focus on something other than just academics and can focus on community building. It’s a large part of what makes Haverford great.” 

“It’s always an honor to wear the ‘H’ on the old chest to represent the school.”

Mr. Timothy Lengel ’07

For this year’s EA Day competitors, Mr. DiBello has brief advice: “Win.”

History teacher Mr. Timothy Lengel ’07 also has a special place in his heart for EA Day.

“I both loved [EA Day] and I was nervous every year because I was running on the cross-country team,” Mr. Lengel said.

Mr. Lengel embraced competition as a student, and continues to as a teacher.

“It’s always an honor to wear the ‘H’ on the old chest to represent the school. I feel the same way [now] in that I coach the same team,” Mr. Lengel said.

For this weekend’s showdown, Mr. Lengel encourages students to play hard.

“Play hard, Play fair,” Mr. Lengel said. “Go Fords.”